The musical adapted from the 2016 Malaysian blockbuster will premiere on Thursday, 8th February and will run until 11th March 2018. The performance will be held at the new and improved Istana Budaya. We talk to some of the cast members to get the down low on what too expect.
This adaption by Enfiniti , led by Tiara Jacquelina with her directorial debut, is more than just a live retelling of the movie’s screenplay. With the Ola Bola The Musical seeks to explore new angles of the legendary story of our Malaysian team qualifying for the Olympics in the 1980s. For starters, the musical takes a hip-hop approach, with lyrics written by great verse-weavers like Altimet and Mia Palencia (who wrote and sang the official song for the 29th SEA Games, ‘So Many Hands‘. The cast is also stellar, with Iedil Putra as fast-speaking, witty commentator,Rahman, and also returning actors from the film, Luqman Hafidz and Lim Jian Wen reprising their original roles.
Ola Bola is actually a legend that more people need to know about – Melissa Ong
There’s also a whole coterie of actors from the performing arts and the dancing world, and today we’re going to talk to three of them, Melissa Ong, Brian Chan and Khenobu!
Meet the Cast
All of this information is taken from Ola Bola Musical’s official cast profile
Brian Chan plays Tauke, the captain of the football who always finds himself on the less fortunate side of fate. Brian Chan started out as a member of the ensemble for Dato’ Faridah Merican’s restaging of Uda dan Dara in 2015. He then went on to play the lead roles in Five Arts Centre’s Cheras The Musical! and Pan Production’s Always in Wonderland in his first year of professional acting debut alone.
While everyone is socializing, I was in the corner practicing [beatboxing and rapping] Hamilton – Brian Chan
Although musical theatre is his foundation, the young and ambitious actor has a wide range of experience from ensemble work, physical theatre, comedy, and experimental and dramatic lead roles in productions such as Antigone and Enfiniti Academy’s Aladdin Reloaded. He kicked off 2017 by securing a leading role in the Chinese performing arts masterpiece, Thunderstorm and was also nominated as one of Cleo’s Hot 50 Bachelors.
Melissa Ong plays Tauke’s sister, Mei Ling, who have made many sacrifices for the sake of her family.Melissa Ong is a multi-talented performer. She has hosted several TV shows such as Astro XTY Tong Tong’s Wonderland (2013-2016) and Fun Fun Camp (2013).
In 2014, Melissa began her journey as a singer, and has successfully debuted a single EP under a Malaysian girl band called Precious. Not new to performing, Melissa started ballet at the age of 3, and picked up musical instruments such as the violin, piano, harmonica and drum at the age of 5, and started vocal training at the age of 8.
As a dancer, Melissa is experienced in ballet, modern and traditional dance, Latin Dance, Hip Hop, martial arts, belly dance, jazz dance and Broadway dancing. She has been involved in dance projects such as Batu Dance Theater’s The Sunshine Project and Carmen and Paquita.
Melissa has also participated in several musicals such as Kita The Musical, Paper Crane The Musical, Sinbad, Uda & Dara and Broken Bridges.
Mohammad Faridh Mohd Yasin aka Khenobu (B-Boy Crew) is a professional dancer and one of Malaysia’s most renowned B-Boys, having placed first in Battle of the Year Malaysia 4 years consecutively and winning the title of best B-boy for the competition 5 years in a row. Khenobu is also the two-time champion of Red Bull BC One.
His strength lies in his power moves combined with amazing footwork and tricks, earning him the nickname Khenobu (Khef for hometown in Kota Kinabalu and Nobu after a famous ninja known for his speed).
While making a living as a full-time dancer is not most people’s first choice for a career, Khenobu has no qualms in making it his profession, showcasing his talent while outshining his opponents on international platforms.
He was named Astro Battleground All Star Overall Champion at the dance competition, Astro Battleground 2014. His team, Fearless, also took home the coveted title, 2014 Astro Battleground Champion.
Check out our interview below where Melissa, Brian and Khenobu share with us some of their experiences auditioning for the musical!
Get your tickets for Ola Bola The Musical by clicking here.